The scalp is one of the most common areas that can get infected with a variety of diseases, and its detection often goes unnoticed until some major symptoms occur. While detecting scalp infections is tough, especially in a fast-paced world where there is barely time for self-care, learning about the disease and incorporating small preventive measures in your daily life can help you keep the diseases at bay.
What causes scalp infections?
Bacteria and fungus sometimes enter through the hair follicles and cause a variety of skin conditions like Eczema, Psoriasis, Folliculitis, Ring-worm, etc. along with itchiness, redness, and in some cases, hair-fall. Flaky and pus-filled skin can also be a symptom of scalp infection.
Common types of infections
Mentioned below is a list of some of the common types of scalp conditions.
- Hair loss:
Hair loss can happen for a variety of reasons. In males, male pattern baldness is a common genetic phenomenon that leads to the loss of hair in a specific pattern, i.e., starts from a bald spot and spreads to other parts from the hairline.
Psoriasis is characterized by itchy, silvery, and flaky skin and can be found on other parts of the body such as knees and elbows.
The most common type of infection when bacteria or fungus enters the hair follicles is Folliculitis. It appears as a painful red bump and the sores can be crusty.
This is a common fungal infection that occurs on the skin as a ring. In some cases when it appears on the scalp, it is also known as Tinea Capitis.
Impetigo is caused by Staphylococcus bacteria when it enters through broken skin. Although it’s not a primary disease of the scalp and occurs mostly on the face and neck, it can spread to other parts of the body through skin cracks. It presents itself as painful red sores or blisters that leave crusts when damaged.
- Seborrheic Dermatitis (SD):
SD is extremely common and the mildest form of scalp infection. In adults, it is known as dandruff.
Lice don’t directly cause scalp infections but can make the head itchy leading to scratching and rupturing of scalp skin. Lice eggs stay strongly attached to hair and may spread the disease if left untreated.
Treatments and preventive measures
Talking to a dermatologist or a skin doctor first before undergoing any kind of treatment or using any kind of product that markets itself as medicine is always a good idea. However, in case a doctor isn’t immediately available, the following are some of the treatment options for scalp infections.
- Anti-fungal medicines:
Anti-fungal creams and tablets work best against ringworm and other types of fungal infections. In some cases, the anti-fungal is injected into the body. In such scenarios the advice of a doctor is necessary.
Antibiotics are readily available in the market and are used to treat a variety of diseases including impetigo and Folliculitis.
- Light therapy:
Light therapy is a safe and non-invasive technique for treating skin diseases including those of the scalp. Usually, an LED light is used for treating diseases like psoriasis and Scleroderma. But treatments may vary depending on the condition.
Apart from the above-mentioned treatments, preventive measures such as washing the scalp thoroughly with a good shampoo and eating clean food can be practised regularly to avoid scalp infections. Prescription medications can also be taken after consulting a dermatologist.
You should purchase online medicine only after proper consultation with a skin specialist.
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